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Re: [ontolog-forum] Fwd: Breaking news: GoodRelations now fully integrat

To: ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
From: John F Sowa <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sun, 11 Nov 2012 12:49:19 -0500
Message-id: <509FE51F.2000804@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Kingsley,    (01)

The term 'work with' has a wide range of possible interpretations.    (02)

>> Recommendation:  Schema.org is the wave of the future. Any work on
>> formal ontologies and the Semantic Web should embrace and build on
>> the simple versions specified in Schema.org.  I recommend that the
>> W3C should work with Schema.org to make it an integral part of the
>> SW strategy.    (03)

> Recommendation has been long accepted. The W3C does work with Schema.org    (04)

Many SemWebbers claim to "work with" relational databases.  By that,
they mean translating data from an RDB to a set of RDF triples and
using SPARQL.  That is not what I meant.  The main point of my note
is the final phrase: "make it an *integral* part of the SW strategy."    (05)

The announcement that Schema.org adopted GoodRelations was signed
by R. V. Guha, whose previous work included    (06)

  1. Serving as the associate director of Cyc and co-authoring
     the Lenat & Guha book on Cyc, which was published in 1990.    (07)

  2. Developing the theory and implementation of microtheories
     as a method of modularizing the Cyc ontology.  This was
     the topic of his PhD dissertation (1991), for which
     John McCarthy and Ed Feigenbaum served as advisers.    (08)

  3. Defining RDF (with Tim Bray as the XML expert) and defining
     the logic base (LBase) for RDF in collaboration with Pat Hayes.    (09)

That is an impressive list of credentials.  Guha made major
contributions to Cyc, which was and still is the world's largest
formal ontology.   But he also recognized that CycL was far too
complex for most IT professionals.  That's why he chose a much
simpler notation for RDF.    (010)

But even RDF and OWL have become far too complex.  Schema.org uses
JSON notation instead of RDF, and it uses Microdata as the primary
notation for linking web pages to JSON.  They also allow RDFa to be
used, but they don't support all the features of RDFa, RDF, or OWL.
For political reasons, they don't say that RDF and OWL are legacy
systems, but that is the implication of everything they're doing.    (011)

Future directions for both Schema.org and the Semantic Web:    (012)

  1. Continue to use JSON as the primary notation for typed N-tuples.
     It is upward compatible with both RDF and with relational DBs,
     and it has bindings to the data structures of every major
     programming language.  See http://json.org .    (013)

  2. Re-evaluate the proposal by Tim Berners-Lee in Feb 2000, which
     emphasized diversity, heterogeneity, and interoperability.  Those
     three terms, which were omitted from the final DAML report of 2006,
     are essential for the future directions of Schema.org and the SW.
     See http://www.w3.org/2000/01/sw/DevelopmentProposal .    (014)

  3. Recognize that RDBs are *not* going away, and nobody will *ever*
     translate a mission-critical DB to any other form.  Emphasize full
     interoperability of SPARQL and SQL *without* translation.  Many
     implementations already support both notations for queries.    (015)

  4. Adopt a more general version of logic as the semantic foundation
     for *all* logic-based tools used with either Schema.org or the SW.
     In 2000, Tim B-L proposed the Semantic Web Logic Language (SWeLL)
     as a superset of propositional logic, first-order logic, and
     higher order logic.  But the final DAML report of 2006 claimed
     that SWeLL was renamed OWL.  That tactic led the SW to reject FOL
     for queries (as in SQL) and to reject more expressive logics for
     rule-based languages.  That was a major blunder.    (016)

To avoid embarrassment, the SW does not have to admit that they made
a blunder.  They can just shift the emphasis to the notations used
by Schema.org as the primary interface to application programs.    (017)

The SW can continue to support their current tools, but they should let
programmers choose which notations they prefer.  Programmers were never
enthusiastic about the SW tools, and Schema.org looks like a winner.    (018)

John    (019)

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